Short Strolls After Meals May Lower Diabetes Risk in Older People
A 15-minute walk after every meal – that’s what a new study says can lower blood sugar and the risk of type 2 diabetes.
What’s more, it’s better than 45 minutes of sustained walking in the morning or afternoon.
High blood sugar spikes, particularly after meals is a key risk factor in the progression from impaired glucose tolerance - what the study called "pre-diabetes" - to type-2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Older people tend to have poorer blood sugar control after meals due to insulin resistance in the muscles and slow or low insulin secretion from the pancreas.
"The muscle contractions connected with short walks were immediately effective in blunting the potentially damaging elevations in post-meal blood sugar commonly observed in older people," , the researchers said.
The 4th National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS) in 2011 showed a diabetes prevalence of 20.8% amongst Malaysians. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, lower limb amputations that aren’t because of accident trauma, and new cases of blindness among adults. It is a major cause of heart disease and stroke – amongst top 5 leading causes of death in Malaysia.
Resting after eating - the worst thing you can do
Most people eat a big afternoon or evening meal and then take a nap or watch television. "That's the worst thing you can do," lead author Loretta DiPietro said. "Let the food digest a bit and then get out and move," she says.
Dr DiPietro said the findings could lead to an "inexpensive strategy" for preventing type-2 diabetes, but said the results must be confirmed by larger trials.